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General News of Friday, 27 July 2012

Source: myjoyonline

Court stops EC from holding Wulensi and Kwabre West by-elections

Accra High Court has placed an injunction on the Electoral Commission from holding the Wulensi and Kwabre West by-elections.

The injunction follows a joint suit brought by four political parties - the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC), the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP), the Convention People's Party (CPP) and People's National Convention (PNC).

The parties contended that there was no substantive voters' register with which to conduct the elections, asserting that the EC could not go ahead with the by-elections called in the wake of the death of the MPs for the two constituencies because of the absence of a valid voters register.

The General Secretaries of the four parties in a rare unified action accused the EC of dabbling in illegality, an allegation the EC rejected.

They argued that Constitutional Instrument 72 effectively repealed CI 12 on the basis of which the EC was seeking to use the old voters register for the elections.

The Human Rights Court, according to Joy News' Anny Osabutey, has upheld the arguments of the parties.

The court said allowing the EC to use the old register for the by-elections in the two constituencies could trigger electoral disputes.

Alhaji Sani Iddi and Mr Emmanuel Owusu Ansah, MPs for Wulensi and Kwabre West respectively, died within a space of one month.

The EC had penciled July 31, 2012 for the Wulensi by-elections and August 14 for the Kwabre West and had begun receiving nominations for the Wulensi by election.

But that is now on hold.

None of the plaintiffs was in court except their lawyers.